Returning When Called

With the exception of the above, your dog is otherwise a good companion. Easy to live with, good in the house, well controlled on lead -- perhaps, even does great obedience work on lead, or when not distracted -- however, once free, he's in a world of his own. Holler till your hoarse, your voice is background music. He'll come when he's good and ready, and not before.

You may have tried the traditional approaches of long lines, shaker cans, and any amount of food bribes, but to no avail.

This is a common problem, and despite what you may have been told, some dogs simply will not respond to voice command unless they understand that your voice can be augmented with an invisible correction. He must be shown that failure to respond to you voice and to commands he has already been taught -- and to which he responds to when on a lead or long line -- carries a consequence.

Effective use of an e-collar (electronic collar) is probably the answer to your predicament. In this instance, it is important to understand that the e-collar is not intended to teach the 'come' command, but to enforce it. The point being that the dog should already have been taught the basic command of coming when called. In other words, he understands what is being asked of him when he hears his name, but, since he's not physically connected to his owner, he chooses to ignore you, because he's learned that he can.

The e-collar is not suitable for all dogs. Some are extremely determined and will fight it tooth and nail, some can become aggressive in response to an electrical stimulation of any intensity, and others will become overwhelmed and confused at even the lowest possible level of stimulation. Every dog is an individual.

Use of an e-collar, applied judiciously and appropriately with just the exact level of intensity and with precision timing, can yield miraculous results with the majority of dogs.

Conversely, I have seen many dogs confused, panicked, and in some cases terrified by inappropriate use of these devices.

There is a bewildering choice of brands and models on the market, some better than others, but all coming with an instruction book or video. However, although not rocket science, correct use is somewhat more difficult than one would imagine.

Indispensable for achieving success is:

  • Knowing your dog's temperament.
  • Choosing the correct make and model for your dog.
  • Selecting the appropriate level of stimulation for different scenarios.
  • The application of precision timing
  • A controlled environment with the necessary distractions for the training session.

I can provide all of the above. If you have any questions, or wish to make an appointment, please don’t hesitate to contact us.